Sweeney Todd Goes Wide & Tame

DreamWorks and Paramount have ditched plans for a platform release and will go wide with director Tim Burton’s film adaptation of Stephen Sondheim’s Broadway musical “Sweeney Todd” on December 21st.

Originally because of the very dark subject matter, the lead characters are serial killers who ground their victims into pie mince after all, the film was set for a platform release on the 21st and would’ve been rolled out through to a wide release January 11th – much like the studio did with last year’s “Dreamgirls.”

Now though with footage coming through, the studio is apparently seeing Johnny Depp’s Todd character as something quite marketable – much like his Capt. Jack Sparrow role – and so are more confident in the property’s ability to sell to an audience.

Unfortunately this has lead to questioning of the film’s grisly content reports British tabloid The New York Post. Footage of Depp slicing the throats of his victims in rather bloody ways, and body parts being cut up to be thrown in a meat grinder by a young boy, have apparently irked marketing executives who would like the blood toned down.

The question has now become about the film’s rating – the material is R-rated by nature in many ways, but Burton is said to be under contract to deliver a PG-13 film, making one wonder how this is all going to pan out.

Helena Bonham Carter, Alan Rickman, Timothy Spall, Sacha Baron Cohen, Laura Michelle Kelly and Peter Bowles also star in the feature.